SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - In the late 1800s, Sioux Falls was known as a quarry town. The number one thing made from quartzite was pavers, which are the same stones that are on 6th Street near Downtown Sioux Falls.
That may be one of the best places to see Downtown Sioux Falls, but when you're in a car, it might also be one of the noisiest.
"I say well, it's just a reminder of what history was like in Sioux Falls," said Jim Carlson, a board member of the Minnehaha County Historical Society.
He said the stones, which are also called pavers, were reinstalled in that part of the city about 20 years ago. The preservation board is hoping to keep history alive.
"I hope it stays that as a reminder of history," Carlson said. "History, to me, is interesting and also, you know you just need to know how things happened and what caused it."
The road was originally privately paved by two neighbors who lived in houses at the corners of 6th Street and Duluth Avenue. The first place in the city drivers saw pavers was on Phillips Avenue.
The curator of education at the Old Courthouse Museum, Kevin Gansz, said these stones were the number one thing the quarries produced.
"They were shipped all over the country. Quartzite pavers that were made here in Sioux Falls paved the streets in Chicago, Detroit, Joliet, St. Louis," said Gansz.
Historically, the stones eventually became wood blocks and eventually, those were replaced by concrete. History has repeat itself in this part of Sioux Falls though on top of the hill at 6th Street.
Paving Stone Alley, which is right up the street, is the only other place in the city that you can find pavers. When Sioux Falls was still Fort Dakota, Carlson said people would shoot cannon balls in that area of 6th Street for fun.
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